We have a number of truly talented actors and actresses across the whole of the Nigerian movie industry. And more talents are joining Nollywood day by day, with the veterans nonetheless unrelenting. Some of them have earned international recognition, ambassador roles and juicy endorsements.
But we believe there are definitely some that we consider are the most underrated actors in Nigeria, judging by their wonderful screenplay abilities. These unsung stars, if you examine their skillful acting abilities, should get far more recognition than they already have. We have outlined a couple of them in this article. Let’s find out who we believe are the top 10 most underrated actors in Nigeria.
Underrated Actors in Nigeria (2023): New Kids on the block
Tomiwa Tegbe started his acting career while still an undergraduate of the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta. He graduated with a degree in Environmental Management Technology. And since then, he has played notable roles in television series, movies and short films. He starred as Wasiu in MTV Shuga Naija, and played the role of James in the Africa Magic TV series My Siblings and I. Tomiwa is also a skilled illustrator whose drawings have been used in magazines, newspapers, books, and catalogs.
Nigeria-born Genoveva schooled and grenup in the United States. After completing her Law degree at the University of Surrey, she worked briefly as an usher for a UK media consultant. She connected with some producers who gave her acting roles. But eventually, she was able to deliver her audition tapes to Nigerian movie producers in response to a casting call. That led her into Nollywood, as she was invited into Ebony Life’s On The Real. She featured in Netflix mini-drama series Blood Sister and performed so impressively in the role of Timileyin Ademola. Genoveva has acted in a number of other movies. Genoveva was also nominated for the Best Actress in a Drama series at the 2022 African Magic Viewers Choice Awards for her role in the drama film A Tune Away.
Chinenye Ubah began her acting career in Asaba, Delta state in 2003 while still in secondary school. She played the child character of Grace in the movie Selfish Desires. Then in 2006, she played the lead role in the movie The Eyes of Love, and then went on a break to complete her schooling. After graduating in Theatre Arts at the Delta State University she moved to Lagos in 2019.
A reserved and private person, Chinenye has starred in some other movie roles with good delivery. She also aspires to be a movie producer.
Uzoamaka Onuoha is a Theatre and Films Studies graduate of the University of Nigeria Nsukka. In 2018, her fervent love for acting took her for the first time into Nollywood as she featured in the movie If I am President. She has since then okayed a number if roles in films, TV series and stage plays. That includes her exceptional role in the crime thriller Diiche. Indeed she deserved more recognition that she has gotten so far.
Tobi Makinde began his acting career as a child star in the movie Silenced. He went on to feature in Nathaniel Ibekwe’s sitcom, Kamson and Neighbors. Then he took a break to continue his studies. He graduated with a Theatre Arts degree at the University of Lagos, then went to secure his Masters degree at the same university.
His attempt to return to acting was not easy, but he eventually landed a role in Industreet. Later on, he met with Funkẹ Akindele and clinched the role of Timini in Jenifa’s Diary. Tobi has interpreted his roles so excellently, and has earned him a special place as a mentee of Funkẹ Akindele. He is also training to be a director. He co-directed the high-grossing movie Battle on Bukka Street in 2022.
Underrated Actors in Nigeria (2023): Older Stars
Shaffy Bello became a popular face when she teamed up with Seyi Sodimu to sing the hit song Love Me Jeje in 1997. And since then, she has ventured into the movie industry, appearing now and then in exceptionally-delivered roles. She has starred in Nollywood movies namely Chief Daddy, Her Excellency and Elevator Baby to mention a few. Her clear British accent, commanding poses, exceptional fashion sense and good roleplays are unforgettable. Truly she is not accorded enough recognition.
Zainab Balogun is not just a talented actress. She is a British-Nigerian model, an Ebony Life TV presenter, a fim maker and social media influencer. She has started in many international movies, television shows and TV series. Amongst them are the movie The Dark Knight Rises directed by Hollywood director Christopher Nolan. Also notable are the roles she played in the TV shows The Charlatans, and BBC’s One Material Girl. But very few Nigerian movie geeks know this interesting character.
Ini Dima Okojie
A whole lot of Nigerians might not be familiar with this delectable lady. She started out her acting career in 2014 on the set of Taste of Love, a television series where she played the role of ‘Feyisayo Pepple. In 2016, she featured in the movie North East as the character, Hadiza Ahmed‘. Her screenplay in North East was impressive enough to endorse her for two award nominations in 2017. Ini was nominated for the Most Promising Actress at the City People Movie Awards in 2017. And also nominated for Best Actress in a Supporting Role at the Nigeria Movie Awards, that same year.
Omotunde Adebowale David (Lolo-1)
The famous Lolo-1 is a well-known radio broadcaster, who starred in the funny role of Adaku the glutton in the TV comedy series, Jenifa’s Diary. Adaku had such a heavy Igbo accent and was insatiable when it came to food.
And in 2020, she produced her own movie titled When Love is Not Enough. It was directed by Okiki Afolayan.
Timini Egbuson is the younger brother of Nigerian veteran actress, Dakore Egbuson. He played the role of Tobi in the MTV television series Shuga. He won Best Actor in a Drama Award at the 2020 African Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards for his role in the movie Elevator Baby.
Timini has played several impressive roles mostly as a lover boy in Nollywood. In spite of his charm, he is not yet so loudly applauded in the Nigerian movie industry.
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